Essentials for living off campus

By now, the vast majority of current students will have sorted out their accommodation for the upcoming academic year, which is a very exciting time. Lots of first year students will be taking the leap and living off campus for the first time!

If you’ve been living on campus this year, then you’ll be used to your accommodation being only a few minutes away from the centre of campus. This is incredibly convenient if you want to go back to your room for a few hours between classes, or make some lunch before you get back to studying (or to roll out of bed ten minutes before your lecture..!) However, living off campus is a lot different. You often have to spend hours on campus between classes, which can be difficult to get used to if you’ve always lived on campus.

So, here’s a few things you might want to consider when you make the switch…


Of course, if you’re walking to campus with a friend then it’s is the perfect opportunity for a good catch up and a natter. However, if you’re walking alone, then a pair of earphones can make your daily commute to campus go by so much quicker. There’s only a limited amount of times that you can walk the same route every day without it driving you mad, so I find that some music mixes it up a little! Earphones are particularly good, as you can just wind them up and slip them into your pocket during the day!

off campus essentials pics



If you’re walking to campus, then a good coat is an absolute must. Especially at the moment, with the weather being so cold, it can be a good investment to make. If you live in the Towers or South Courts, then you can often survive the 2 minutes to your class without one. However, if you don’t wear one living off campus, you’ll probably freeze 😉



Other types of transport

If you’re lucky enough to have a car, then it might be worth using it to travel to campus. Although you’ll have to get a permit to park on campus, it might be well worth it for convenience. Permits only cost £23 and once you have one, you only have to pay 10p an hour or 70p a day for your parking! Having a car is also useful if you travel into town a lot and it’s brilliant for when you do your food shopping. It can easily become quite expensive to run considering costs such as petrol, insurance and maintenance, so do have a think as to whether you would use it!

If not, it’s well worth checking out getting a bus pass. Students actually get a discount on bus passes from First buses if you can’t drive. These are annual buses that allow unlimited travel around Colchester. If you’re interested, then they are available to buy from the Burrow! However, do think about whether you would use it or not. It’s quite an investment to make and if you’re not going to use it much then there’s no point!

You could also get a bike for a more cost effective way of getting to campus. There’s loads of places around campus to lock up your bike and there are also some cycle paths in the area. If you’re looking to get a bike then a bike stall comes to Square 5 on the Colchester campus every week. Just don’t forget your helmet!


Portable charger

If you’ve got to stay on campus for a long time during the day, then it’s almost inevitable, in this day and age, that your phone will at some point run out of battery. Therefore, it can be really useful to keep a portable charger in your bag to prevent you begging for a charger from one of your mates! Also, if you’ve forgotten to charge your phone the night before, then this can be a lifesaver!




Especially if you’ve got a break from classes that covers lunchtime, a lunchbox can be a really good way to save lots of money and time. I find on average that I can easily spend £5 a day on lunch if I’m on campus, which can easily add up. Whether you make some sandwiches in the morning, or have some leftovers from the night before, you could seriously save a lot of money by bringing your lunch with you.

Water bottle

Like, a lunchbox, a water bottle can be a really good way to save money. There’s tap water available on the bar in the SU bar and there are water fountains in the Silberrad student centre.



I hope that this has all helped and that it’ll make living off of campus that bit easier 🙂

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